n Africa Conflict Monthly Monitor - Analysis of West African regional security cooperation - : West Africa - issue in focus

Volume 2013, Issue 08
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Islamist militancy, transnational organised crime and maritime piracy have become major sources of insecurity in West Africa. In order to combat these threats, states in the West African region have turned increasingly to cooperation, particularly in the past half-decade. A June 2013 call by Mali's foreign minister for more regional intelligence-sharing and joint military operations echoes several other similar suggestions which have been floated by various international leaders and analysts. In particular, this is directed toward the emergent regional security threat posed by Islamist militants who are engaged in terrorist attacks and other insurgent military behaviour. It is worth noting that these calls for the development of cooperative security frameworks were made before the Malian security crisis, which began in 2012. However, the Mali crisis, in particular, has propelled action directed toward regional cooperation to new levels.

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